Photo: Padule di Fuecchio wetlands by Francesca
See all finalist pictures in a slideshow below.
Wetlands are home to complex ecosystems rich in biodiversity. They provide vital ecosystem services such as water filtration, making them the kidneys of the Earth – and they are disappearing.
Wetlands are majorly threatened by commercial development, mineral and peat extraction, and a myriad of other human practices and their consequences – this is the premise on which World Wetlands Day was created.
On February 2, 1971, member states signed the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance in Ramsar, Iran. Recognizing the importance of wetlands, Canada became a contracting party to the convention in 1981. From there, more countries signed on as contracting parties, and by 1997, when there were 93 contracting parties, the first World Wetlands Day was held in 50 nations. It is now held in 77 countries around the world, with a total of 822 activities reported.
This year, Ramsar is hoping to inspire youth to see the beauty in wetlands by hosting the World Wetlands Day Youth Photo Contest. Entrants aged 15-24 were encouraged to visit a wetland nearby, take a picture and upload it to the World Wetlands Day website. After receiving more than 2,200 submissions, eight finalists have been announced. You can see their photos below. Congratulations to the finalists!
The World Wetlands Day 2015 Youth Photo Competition Finalists
Click on any image to view as a slideshow.
Before announcing the placement of the finalists, Ramsar must first determine whether the finalists have complied with all contest rules. Check back to the World Wetlands Day website or Ramsar’s Twitter and Facebook for the final announcement! While you are on their site, be sure to make a pledge for wetlands.
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